Cola Glazed Grilled Chicken

It’s finally here.

It’s golf tournament weekend.

This weekend my fine city hosts the FedEx St. Jude Classic played at TPC Southwind, and I could not be more excited. Back in the day (pre-employment), I got to sit outside and enjoy 5 solid days of golf. Now, I’m a little more limited to the weekend, but man do I love every single second.

Now, some of you silly people think that Summer begins on June 21st. But in Memphis, it’s like reverse groundhog day – Summer starts 2 weeks early. Seriously, I can walk outside and stand there for 5 minutes and break into a sweat. I know, I’m amazed I’m married too.

So for me, this weekend brings seersucker and linen, a Pronto Pup date (or two) with my Biffer, the infamous “Hush Y’all” signs, cold beer, exciting golf…and, of course, the urge to break out the grill.

I know some people are intimidated by the grill, but I assure you, it’s so easy once you learn! Grilling is a great way to add a little extra flavor to anything, including this delicious recipe I came across via one of my favorite magazines, Cooking Light.

This weekend I urge you to get outdoors, fire up your grill, and throw together a delicious meal featuring this simple, smoky and sweet recipe!

Cola Glazed Grilled Chicken (Serves 2 / 5 WW pts. per serving)

Adapted from original recipe here.

Ingredients

3/4 tsp. canola oil

8 oz. chicken breasts (2 – 4oz. pieces)

1 Tbsp. minced onion

1/4 cup Coca-Cola

1 1/2 Tbsp. ketchup

1 tsp. cider vinegar

2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

1/2 tsp. Chili powder

1 tsp. smoked Paprika

1/8 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. ground cumin

Preheat grill to medium-high heat and spray with non-stick spray.

Heat a small saucepan to medium-high. Saute onion in oil for 2 minutes, then add garlic and cook an additional minute. Pour in Coke, ketchup, vinegar, Worcestershire and chili powder. Stir and bring to a boil, then reduce to medium heat and simmer 10-12 minutes. Stir occasionally until sauce thickens. Set aside 2 Tbsp. and use the rest on the grill.

StepbyStep

For the chicken, mix together sugar, salt, paprika and cumin and sprinkle over both sides. I sprinkled a little more paprika and cumin over the chicken to make sure it was thoroughly seasoned.

Add chicken to grill and baste with sauce. Turn after 3-4 minutes and base again. Repeat until sauce is gone and chicken is cooked through. (I use the thin chicken breasts – so they cook in under 10 minutes).

Plated

Plate the chicken and brush with remaining sauce. I grilled some corn on the cob with the chicken and made my delicious Parmesan and green bean casserole, and it all came together perfectly.

Cola Glazed Grilled Chicken

Hope y’all have a great weekend…I know I will!

Buffalo Chicken Cheese Fries

Why is it that I can’t get enough of buffalo-chicken-flavored things?

Oh, right – because they’re awesome…

Buffalo Chicken Cheese Fries

I ordered something “buffalo-style” last week at lunch and my co-worker laughed and said “You seriously have an obsession with buffalo flavor don’t you?” Um, yes…have you read my blog?

Well, just when you thought I couldn’t possibly come up with another thing to layer with blue cheese, celery and hot sauce – I went and did it again.

With my Memphis Grizzlies in round 3 of the NBA Playoffs, it’s tough to want to make like, roasted fish with vegetables for dinner when a game is on – I need (faux) bar food!

So I’ve sliced up potatoes before to make my own cheese fries, but my Tuesday evening did not warrant that kind of effort after my workout. Then I remembered seeing a recipe on a blog I follow (“My Life as a Mrs.” check her out!) for buffalo cheese fries using frozen french fries, so I gave it a shot.

Excellent choice.

Y’all, these are so delicious – and I portioned it out to make sure it was enough food without being totally horrible for you! I’m sure they’d be a welcome addition to any party you are attending this holiday weekend!

Buffalo Chicken Cheese Fries (Serves 2 for a meal / 13 WW pts. per serving)

Slightly modified from original recipe found here.

Ingredients

10 oz. Alexia Waffle Cut Fries

1 cup shredded chicken breast (boneless and skinless)

1/3 cup Frank’s Red Hot sauce (+ about 2 Tbsp. for drizzling)

1/4 cup celery, chopped

1/3 cup reduced-fat blue cheese

1/3 cup reduced fat shredded cheddar

1 Tbsp. chopped green onion

2 Tbsp. fat-free Ranch (for dipping)

Heat your oven to 400. Layer fries on a baking sheet and bake according to directions.

Chop your veggies and mix your chicken with the hot sauce.

When fries are done baking, move them close together and top with chicken and celery. (I separated mine into 2 portions because the hubby was studying and wanted to eat later, so this portion is allll for me.) Then top with blue cheese crumbles and shredded cheddar.

Step by Step

Bake another 5 minutes, or until cheese has melted.

Sprinkle with additional hot sauce and add green onions and serve with ranch on the side for dipping.

Plated

I barely needed any ranch, as these were so full of flavor!

Bite - Buffalo Chicken Cheese Fries

Try it out if you’re a buffalo chicken freak  fan like me, or if you just want to try a new (and healthy!) twist on a classic.

Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend everybody!

 

Spicy Chicken with Peanut Noodles

I was shocked today to look at my calendar and find it was Friday.

I mean, that’s a rarity. Normally I’m on full-out countdown mode for the weekends. I guess being stuck at home with “the plague” for the past day and a half did me in.

For those of you who don’t know me – I have 2 irrational completely normal fears in life: needles and balloons. So a trip to the doctor’s office is always an anxiety-inducing experience, as I never know if they are going to have to jab me with something.

So after an hour in the waiting room on Wednesday, I was a little surprised to see that I had a child for a nurse. Seriously, I question if she is legally able to vote. After waiting for an hour to see if I was going to get jabbed, I find out – yes. As she’s wringing my hand to try to make it work – I feel a little dizzy. I am often embarrassed by my body’s reaction to needles, so I bashfully say “I’m feeling a little faint – I just have a thing with needles.”

“Oh no! Cause I’m gonna have to do it again” she said.

Needless to say, between being sick and being tortured by Nurse McTeen, I was exhausted. I feel like I’ve been a waste of life this week – so I’m so thankful that I’m feeling a little better and have some of my energy back!

So first order of business – share a yummy recipe with y’all! I mentioned previously that I’ve been on a “new” food kick, trying to venture out a little, and my husband reminded me of a recipe I haven’t made in a while that has a Thai-twist to it. Sorry to my readers with peanut allergies – this one is probably not up your alley! The ingredient list looks intimidating, but I assure you, it’s really simple to throw together and incredibly delicious.

Spicy Chicken with Peanut Noodles (Serves 2  / 11 WW points per serving)

Ingredients

For the chicken:

2 (4 oz.) boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 Tbsp. soy sauce

1/2 Tbsp. light brown sugar

1/2 Tbsp. walnut oil

1/4 tsp. kosher salt

For the noodles:

2 oz. rice noodles

1/4 cup chicken broth

2 Tbsp. reduced-fat peanut butter

1 Tbsp. light brown sugar

1 Tbsp. rice vinegar

1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice

1/2 Tbsp. soy sauce

1/2 Tbsp. pickled ginger, minced

2 Tbsp. dried cilantro

1/2 Tbsp. Sriracha (this is a medium level of heat – gauge accordingly)

1 Tbsp. roasted, salted peanuts, chopped

In a shallow dish, whisk together soy sauce, sugar, walnut oil and kosher salt. Add chicken breasts and marinate at least 2 hours.

Remove chicken and cook through. I typically grill mine, but I just sautéed this time around and it was fine – about 4-5 minutes on each side over medium heat.

Cook Chicken

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil and add rice noodles. Cook according to directions. While the noodles are cooking, heat chicken broth to medium heat in a small saucepan. Whisk in peanut butter, brown sugar, vinegar, lime juice, ginger, cilantro and Sriracha until smooth.

Peanut Noodles

Drain rice noodles and add peanut sauce. Stir to coat and add to plates. Top with cooked chicken breast and add chopped peanuts.

Plated chicken

Then devour.

SpicyChickenwithPeanutNoodles

Hope you all have a great weekend!

 

 

 

Chicken with Chorizo Confetti

So we’re going to discuss why today is awesome.

It’s awesome because today, my husband bridges the age gap. You see, there’s a glorious ridiculous 2-month period each year in which I am, number-wise, two years senior to my hubby. While he’s not entering his 30’s like the author of this blog did earlier this year, at least he’s in his final year of being a 20-something.

So this is a special blog dedicated to my hubby. Happy Birthday babe, I hope you have a wonderful day and I can’t wait to spend the rest of our birthdays together!

BirthdayBoy

The husband and I started dating about 4 1/2 years ago (wow!) and the beginning of our relationship involved quite a few phone conversations. We’d always try to come up with a few random questions to ask each other, from the deep and meaningful to the fun and trivial. One of the questions I remember was “If you had to eat anything every day for the rest of our life, what would it be?” His answer was “Pizza or Mexican food.”

People, I’ve mentioned before that there are certain foods I must have a craving for otherwise I’m almost repelled by it. Mexican food is one of those foods. So poor husband is often deprived of one of his favorites (notice I said one, as I do share his love for pizza).

He managed to pull me out to various Mexican restaurants in that first year, which is when he introduced me to one of his favorites. Chorizo. It’s a Mexican sausage that is basically pork seasoned with Paprika and salt. It’s delicious. It’s also incredibly cheap to buy at your local grocery store. We actually bought some at a not-so-local grocery store while on vacation in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico – so on the 4th of July in 2010, I made us goat cheese and chorizo omelets as we blasted patriotic music. One of my favorite memories.

Well, a few weeks ago I stumbled upon a recipe in my Cooking Light magazine that had chorizo in it, so obviously I had to make it for the hubby. It did not disappoint. So, in honor of the birthday boy, I get to share a favorite food of his! This recipe is seriously easy – under 30 minutes including prep time!

Chicken with Chorizo Confetti (Serves 2 / 7 WW pts. per serving) Slightly modified from original recipe, found here.

Ingredients

2 (4oz.) pieces raw, boneless, skinless chicken breast

1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

1/4 tsp. garlic salt

2 oz. ground pork chorizo

2 Tbsp. onion, chopped

1 Tbsp. carrot, chopped

2 Tbsp. red bell pepper, chopped

2 Tbsp. yellow bell pepper, chopped

1 Tbsp. green bell pepper, chopped

2 Tbsp. chicken broth

1 tsp. cilantro

Season both sides of chicken with smoked paprika and garlic salt. Allow to rest with seasoning at least 30 minutes.

While chicken is soaking up the goodness, chop your veggies and set aside until ready to use. Keep onion and carrot together and the bell peppers together.

Heat a medium skillet to medium heat and add non-stick spray. Add chicken and cook 4-5 minutes on each side until cooked through.

Chicken

When the chicken is cooking, heat a small skillet to medium heat. Add chorizo and cook 3-4 minutes, breaking up with a spatula as it cooks. Chorizo has a lot of grease, so you don’t need to worry about oil. Once the chorizo has cooked for a few minutes, add the onion and carrots. Cook for 1-2 minutes. Then add bell peppers, cooking another 1-2 minutes. Add salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low and add chicken broth, stirring to incorporate. Basically keep this warm until the chicken is done.

ChorizoConfetti

Once the chicken is cooked through, add to a plate and top with the chorizo confetti.

PlatedChicken

So now we can enjoy chorizo in a healthy way, mixed with vegetables and chicken!

ChickenwithChorizoConfetti

Hope you all enjoy and have a wonderful weekend – I know we have some celebrating to do in our household!

Chicken Parmesan Meatballs and Spaghetti

So I’ve been in a rut lately when it comes to food. I am very much a creature of habit and comfort, so while I love trying new things, sometimes I just need to push myself to do so.

Like last weekend, the husband and I were trying to figure out where to go for dinner. We kept throwing out “the usual suspects” until I said I was just wanting to try something different, like a Greek restaurant. I’ve eaten at Greek restaurants – but oddly enough, never in my hometown – which has a plethora of international cuisine!

So we ended up at a Mediterranean restaurant (the other 2 places we were going to try closed super early!) and I tried falfael for the first time! It definitely satisfied my craving, but I still want to try the Greek place. Who doesn’t love some spanakopita?

One of my comfort foods I haven’t made in a while is, well, pretty much anything Italian. I love Italian food and other than the occasional pizza, I just don’t make it much! I’ve definitely had a craving for it lately – so a few weeks ago, I decided to jazz up one of my favorite dishes, chicken Parmesan (which I shared with you in my first blog!).

What is better comfort food than spaghetti and meatballs? Try spaghetti with chicken Parmesan meatballs!

Chicken Parmesan Meatballs and Spaghetti (Serves 2 / 11 WW points per serving)

Ingredients

8 oz. ground chicken breast

1/2 egg, beaten

1 Tbsp. whole-wheat breadcrumbs

1 1/2 Tbsp. reduced-fat Parmesan cheese, grated

1/2 tsp. garlic salt

1/4 tsp. onion powder

1/4 tsp. black pepper

1 tsp. Italian herb seasoning

1/3 cup reduced-fat Mozzarella, shredded (and chopped into smaller pieces)

4 oz. whole-wheat spaghetti

1 cup canned tomato sauce

Heat oven to 400 and lightly grease a small baking sheet. Start your water boiling for your pasta.

In a medium bowl, add chicken, egg, breadcrumbs, Parmesan, onion powder, garlic salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and mozzarella. Mix together with your hands until blended well. If the mixture is too “wet” feeling, add a few more pinches of breadcrumbs or Parmesan. If it’s too crumbly, add a little more egg. Once the mixture is the right consistency, roll into ping-pong sized meatballs – should make 8-10.

MixtureBakingsheet

Place meatballs on baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes. The tough part with chicken is that it doesn’t “brown” like beef, so you will want to cut into one to make sure it’s cooked through – no salmonella with your spaghetti please!

Baked

While your meatballs are cooking, cook your spaghetti. Drain and set aside. Pour out water and in the same pot, add tomato sauce. This is where you have to play around a little with flavors. I added 1 tsp. Italian herb seasoning, probably 1/4 tsp. garlic salt and a pinch or two of black pepper. You can throw in red pepper flakes if you’re feeling feisty! Heat sauce and add the spaghetti and stir to coat.

Sauce

 

When the meatballs are ready, divide the spaghetti between two plate and top with meatballs.

PlatedMeatballs

Pretty simple, but incredibly delicious and a fun twist on a classic!

Chicken Parmesan Meatballs

Have a wonderful GOOD Friday and Happy Easter!

White Chicken Enchiladas

So this week has given me two very sad instances of “Here’s how I know I’m getting old…”

  1. I was pumped that spring break was this week. Not because I’m in school or working for a school, allowing me a “free” week off, but rather because it was smooth sailing to work due to the amazing decrease in traffic.
  2. I looked at my calendar on Wednesday and was shocked to see St. Patrick’s Day was this weekend. I’m pretty sure it was a major social event in my previous life (read: my 20’s) – and my plans this year revolve around laundry day.

Quite honestly, I don’t mind – I love where I am right now in life! I have my best friend to come home to every night – so whether our social calendar is booked up every weekend, or we have a few nights to hang out at home and solve the world’s problems, I am 100% content.

Don’t get me wrong, we aren’t total shut-ins! There are definitely occasions when we need to get out with our friends. And with the weather pointing to Spring, I can’t wait for some patio nights at our favorite restaurants, which usually involve Mexican food, margaritas, and good friends.

So, I decided to whip up a diet-friendly Mexican dish that you can prepare for your next outdoor dinner party whenever the weather decides to cooperate in your area! Serve with a Skinnygirl Margarita for a totally guilt-free evening! I found a link to this one on Pinterest and made a few modifications – but you can find the original recipe here.

White Chicken Enchiladas  (Serves 2-3 / 6 WW pts. per enchilada)

Ingredients

1 cup chicken cooked and shredded chicken breast

1-2 Tbsp. taco seasoning

5 whole wheat tortillas

1/2 cup shredded fat-free cheddar cheese

1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat mozzarella cheese

1 1/2 Tbsp. Blue Bonnet Light margarine

1 1/2 Tbsp. white whole-wheat flour

1 cup fat-free chicken broth

1/2 cup fat-free sour cream

2-3 oz. jarred jalapenos, chopped

Heat oven to 350 and grease a 9 x 13 pan or dish.

In a medium bowl, mix chicken and taco seasoning until blended. In a small bowl, mix together cheeses. Add half of the blended cheese to the chicken and mix well.

Chicken Mixture

Place chicken mixture in the center of tortillas and roll tortillas. Place in pan.

Fill EnchiladaWrapped

Melt butter and whisk in flour. Stir in broth and whisk until thickened. Reduce heat. Add jalapenos and sour cream and whisk until incorporated. Do not bring to a boil.

Jalapenos

 

Pour sauce over the top of your rolled enchiladas. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and bake for 25 minutes.

TopBake

 

Plate your enchiladas and pour a little of the excess sauce over the tops…

Plated Enchiladas

And then devour. Preferable on a beautiful evening on your deck or patio, surrounded by friends and family. And margaritas.

Close Up

Have a great weekend everybody!

 

Chicken Picatta

It is March 1st. What is up with that?

I feel like I was just crying about celebrating the big birthday weekend, new hairstyle and all, but now you’re telling me it’s March?

I don’t even want to think about the fact that the weather will be warming up and the fact that bathing suits are hanging up in stores. *Shudder*

I’m not sure about y’all, but I definitely took a swan dive off the proverbial wagon and have some serious work to do before I’m bathing-suit ready. So back to hard work and discipline I go! Honestly, it’s just been pure laziness in my planning. If I don’t know what I’m making for dinner when I leave work, it’s easy to decide on take-out  – and I lack self-discipline when it comes to eating out!

If you’re in the same boat but still have a love for food, then I hope you enjoy some of the guilt-free recipes I have to share with you, such as what I think is my absolute favorite recipe, lightened up! (Side note – I love capers, olives, peperoncinis and can eat them out of the jar at any given time – so I usually hog the capers in this dish!)

Lightened Up Chicken Picatta  (serves 2 / 7 WW pts. per serving)

Ingredients

8 oz. chicken breast (I buy the thin cut ones, about 4 oz. each)

2 Tbsp. white whole-wheat flour

Salt and pepper to taste

2 tsp. olive oil

1/2 tsp. minced garlic

1/2 cup dry white wine (chardonnay is my personal preference)

1/2 – 3/4 cup fat-free chicken broth

1 Tbsp. capers, drained

1 Tbsp. Blue Bonnet light (using a different reduced-calorie margarine may affect points)

1 1/2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

2 slices lemon

Begin by heating olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat.

While oil is heating, sprinkle both sides of chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Coat in flour, shaking off any excess.

Flour

Add chicken to pan and cook for 5 minutes on each side. Set chicken aside on a plate and reduce heat to medium-low.

Saute

Now add white wine and garlic to the pan to de-glaze, scraping up any of the delicious browned pieces. Cook 1-2 minutes. Add broth, lemon juice and capers and stir. Return chicken to pan and cook 2 minutes one each side.

GarlicCapers

Add chicken to plates. Then add margarine to the sauce and stir until melted. Pour sauce over chicken and serve…

Close Up Chicken Picatta

Seriously my favorite, my mouth is watering right now…

Chicken Picatta

 

Hope y’all have a wonderful weekend!

 

A Week of Celebration

Do you know what tomorrow is? I mean, other than the day that adorable little Phil will tell us when Spring is set to arrive.

Tomorrow is my blog’s birthday! Or is it anniversary?

Let’s go with birthday since that’s the theme of the week. On Monday I said farewell to my 20’s – so today, as a way of celebrating this lovely occasion, my blog will say farewell to something too. Have you figured out the surprise? Check the top of your computer screen:

www.cookingonthebrightside.com

My blog has its’ own domain name now! Very nerdy of me to be excited about, I know, but hey – if you’ve been with me for a year, you expect it by now, right?

Have no fear – any older links will still take you to your favorite recipe. Now it’s just abbreviated, which means it’s easier to remember for when you’re passing it along to your friends. (Wink wink).

In addition to tomorrow being a very special day for my blog – Sunday is a very special day  for football lovers (like myself) and for food lovers (um, duh) and for those of us who just enjoy fun celebratory occasions in general.

So if you’re hosting a party for 50 on Sunday or just getting together with a small group and maybe tuning in to the Puppy Bowl – here’s a little recipe roundup for your menu planning!

Pre Game

AppCollage

Buffalo Chicken Potato Skins

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

Buffa-faux Chicken Tenders

Mexican Dip

Skinny Faux-Fried Mozzarella Sticks

The Main Event

Main Course Collage

Buffalo Chicken Soft Tacos

Buffalo Chicken Soup

BBQ Chicken Stromboli

Cheeseburger Soup

Pizza Soup

Spicy Pulled Beef

Turkey Beer Chili

Of course, you can always jazz your party up with a fun theme. I’m talking about New Orleans. So serve up some festively Cajun recipes and throw back a Louisiana-brewed beer  (might I recommend Abita? Light and Amber are delicious!) and you’ll feel like you’re celebrating in the Big Easy!

Lagniappe (translation: a little something extra)

CajunCollage

“Fried Shrimp” with Spicy Sauce (or make some po boys cut up into sliders!)

Cajun Shrimp Casserole

Creole Stew

I hope everybody has a wonderful weekend celebrating – as they say in N’awlins…

“Laissez les bons temps rouler!”

Buffalo Chicken Potato Skins

I have a serious issue.

I mean beyond my fear of balloons (also known as “globophobia” – which means I am not alone!). And okay, I’m also overlooking the rage incited within me when somebody confuses the words “flavor” and “scent.” Yeah, let that one marinate for a minute..it’s maddening!

The issue I’m talking about is my love for all things buffalo-flavored.

You’d think I would have fun out of buffalo inspired recipes by now. You, my dear friend, would be wrong.

I also have an obsession with potato skins. I love potatoes in pretty much every form – but roasted until crispy and topped with cheese and bacon? Right, no words needed.

Clearly, not exactly the healthiest of choices – but in my defense, I usually order this “appetizer” as a main meal. I’ll be debating my selection and the husband will look up from his menu and be like “You’re ordering potato skins aren’t you?” Yes, over that delicious famous local burger or yummy spicy hot wings. Over hot wings people – that speaks volumes, does it not?

Well, I have finally found a way to combine my two loves – and the best part is that this recipe is healthy for either a main meal or a snack! It’s the perfect thing to enjoy while watching college football this weekend – or to snack on next week when you’re burnt out on turkey!

Buffalo Chicken Potato Skins (2 WW pts. per skin with 1/2 Tbsp. Ranch dressing)

6 small russet potatoes

8 oz. raw chicken breast

1/4 cup chopped celery

1/3 cup Frank’s Red Hot sauce

6 Tbsp. reduced-fat blue cheese crumbles

1/2 cup shredded fat-free mozzarella

1 Tbsp. Hidden Valley Ranch Mix

6 Tbsp. fat-free Ranch dressing

Salt and pepper

Olive oil spray

Preheat your oven to 450.

Slice all of your potatoes in half. This will give you 12 halves. See? Math is fun!

Now scoop out the insides of your potatoes, leaving about 1/4 inch border to hold your filling and well, allow you to taste the potato. I used a melon baller to scoop since the potatoes are still raw.

Spray both sides of your potatoes with olive oil. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. I sprinkled a little Ranch seasoning on the inside to give it a little extra boost of flavor – yum! Place skins on a lightly greased baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes until the potato flesh is tender and the skins are slightly crispy.

While the potatoes are cooking, bring a pot of water to a boil and add your chicken. When chicken is cooked (8-10 minutes is good) let chicken cool slightly and shred with 2 forks. Add about 2-3 Tbsp. hot sauce and mix well.

When your potato skins are cooked, remove from the oven and begin to assemble!

Add your shredded chicken and celery. Then add about 1/2 Tbsp. each of blue cheese crumbles and shredded mozzarella.

Return to oven for 5-7 minutes until cheese has melted.

Remove and drizzle remaining 2-3 Tbsp. hot sauce on potato skins. I also sprinkled with some dried chives due to lack of green onion, but that’s up to you!

Serve with some fat-free Ranch dressing for dipping and devour!

Try them while you’re rooting on your team this weekend…you won’t regret it!

Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole

Yes, you read that correctly. Chickenfriggincordonbleu – in. A. Casserole!

To be quite honest, I’d never had chicken cordon bleu until I made a skinny version a few months back. However, the whole pounding the chicken thin, rolling it and securing it usually puts me into a fit of rage and kills a bunch of toothpicks. Sometimes it’s worth it – as you saw with my Jalapeno Popper Chicken!

However, sometimes – life just calls for a casserole. And with the chill in the air, you’ll love this layered comfort food – but you know I have your back, so it’s lightened up as to not add layers to YOU!

Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole(serves 4 – 8ww pts/serving)

2 cups cooked chicken, shredded

4 oz. lean sliced deli honey ham

2 oz. reduced-fat Swiss cheese

2 Tbsp. reduced-calorie margarine

2 Tbsp. white whole-wheat flour

1 3/4 cups skim milk

1 Tbsp. lemon juice

1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

3/4 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

1/8 tsp. white pepper

3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs

2 tsp. dried parsley

1/4 tsp. Seasoned salt

“I Can’t Believe It’s Not Buttter” spray

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray medium casserole dish with nonstick spray.

In a medium saucepan, add butter and milk over medium heat and whisk until melted. Add flour and whisk until smooth. Bring to a light simmer and stir until thickened.

Then add lemon juice, mustard, salt, white pepper and paprika. Bring back to light simmer and remove from heat.

Now, take your shredded chicken and spread in the bottom of your casserole dish.

Chop your ham and shred your cheese. Spread ham over the top of the chicken, then spread cheese evenly over the top.

Pour sauce over the cheese and spread, ensuring it reaches the edges.

Sprinkle panko crumbs evenly over the top of the casserole, dusting with parsley and seasoned salt. Spray with butter spray.

Now bake uncovered for 45 minutes until browned and bubbly. Remove from oven and let rest 5 minutes before serving.

This dish is so low in points, you can serve with a delicious crisp salad and a slice of whole wheat bread to soak up the goodness.

Hope y’all enjoy…I know we sure did!